merica is plagued with various threatening health concerns such as heart disease and diabetes, but in order to rid our society of these dangerous conditions, we must first work to defeat the most probable root of the problem: obesity. According to Merriam-Webster, obesity is a condition “characterized by the excessive accumulation and storage of fat in the body,” (2018). Although this in itself may not seem so menacing nor dire, American mortality rates prove otherwise.

While the obesity epidemic has become a worldwide dilemma, the United States has experienced one of the fastest escalating cases. The USDA plays a major role in the diets of all Americans therefore it is only logical to evaluate just how influential its regulations and policies have been on elevated obesity rates. While there are several factors that contribute to America’s obesity crisis, USDA policies are mostly at fault for obesity’s prevalence due to the lack of necessary nutrients in the agency’s National School Lunch and Breakfast Program and the encouragement of unhealthy eating habits. The USDA could take various measures that would greatly reduce the risk of obesity for Americans, such as strictly enforcing standard guidelines and mandating nutrition courses for Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) participants as well as Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) participants.

Children are most directly affected through unhealthy school meals. In reality, childhood obesity is a much more usual occurrence in our society than it has been in past years. The obesity cycle will only continue if children are not taught healthy nutrition tips that can guide them throughout their lives. Mandatory nutrition courses could aid SNAP and WIC members to abandon the practice of purchasing junk food and to start prioritizing the purchase of healthy foods instead.

In order to establish appropriate and effective methods to combat this issue, we must first find the correlation between USDA guidelines and the overall health of the citizens of our great nation. Through the use of biology and politics, the following investigation will be conducted: To what extent are United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) policies responsible for the high obesity rates in the United States?


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